G7 meet in UK could witness first in-person Quad meet

Written By: Sidhant Sibal WION
New Delhi, India Published: Mar 14, 2021, 08:30 AM(IST)

Quad summit (representative image). Photograph:( AFP )

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The G7 summit will happen in Carbis Bay, Cornwall and UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson who is the chair of the grouping for 2021 has invited Indian PM Narendra Modi and Australian PM Scott Morrison to attend it

The first Quad in-person meeting could happen on the sidelines of the G7 summit that will take place in the United Kingdom from 11th-13th June 2021. The Quad has US President Joe Biden, India's PM Narendra Modi, Australian PM Scott Morrison and Japan's PM Yoshihide Suga as its members. The group met last week at the leaders level for the first time, but the meet was virtual amid the covid pandemic.

The G7 summit will happen in Carbis Bay, Cornwall and UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson who is the chair of the grouping for 2021 has invited Indian PM Narendra Modi and Australian PM Scott Morrison to attend it. G7 will be for the first-time leaders of all these countries will be together physically. While the UK could oversee the Quad meet, the US is keen on hosting the first in-person meet as well. 

Last week's leadership summit saw a major announcement with the Quad Covid Vaccine initiative, seen as major practical cooperation between the members of the grouping. Basically, American vaccines will be produced by India, financed by the US and Japan, and provided logistical support by Australia. These vaccines will be given to countries in the Indo-Pacific, the first being the countries in South East Asia. 

Japan, through JICA, is in discussions to provide concessional yen loans for the Indian govt to expand manufacturing for COVID-19 vaccines for export. The US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) will work with Hyderabad-based Indian manufacturer Biological E to increase its capacity to produce at least 1 billion doses of COVID-19 vaccines by the end of 2022.

The group comes together at a time of increased Chinese aggressiveness from Line of Actual Control row with India, issues with Japan over Senkaku Island, trade tiff with Australia and the US. While China obviously wasn't mentioned in the first-ever joint statement, it did call for "a region that is free, open, inclusive, healthy, anchored by democratic values, and unconstrained by coercion."

The statement mentioned prioritising the "role of international law in the maritime domain, particularly as reflected in the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS)" and ".. to meet challenges to the rules-based maritime order in the East and South China Seas". China has been known to not only violate UNCLOS but also based on its nine-dash line policy claiming the entire south china sea, much to the dismay of the members of ASEAN grouping. 

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